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Alonso's slow grounder gives Padres win over Diamondbacks

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The Canadian Press
5/4/2014 7:41:03 PM
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SAN DIEGO -- The way the San Diego Padres have been struggling offensively, it seemed fitting the ball didn't leave the infield on the play that carried them to victory against the lowly Arizona Diamondbacks.

Cameron Maybin reached base after an overturned umpire's call, then scored on Yonder Alonso's slow grounder with one out in the ninth inning to give the Padres a 4-3 win Sunday that stopped a four-game losing streak.

It was a perfect combination for the Padres -- the speedy Maybin at third base, left-hander Oliver Perez on the mound, one out and the infield in, a ball that went just the right distance and another winning challenge by manager Bud Black.

Maybin broke for home as Alonso hit a dribbler down the first-base line. Paul Goldschmidt barehanded it and threw home, but Maybin had already slid across with the winning run.

"With a lefty pitcher there, I'm able to get a little bit bigger lead than usual," said Maybin, who was reinstated from the disabled list a week earlier. "And it was just a situation, man, where if it was a line drive I probably was going to get doubled up. I was going on the swing even more so than contact, so it worked out. It was probably the shortest RBI he ever had."

Said Alonso: "It could have gone 10 feet, and Cam would have scored. I know with Cam running, anything's possible in this game. My approach the whole time was just get it done. Whatever you do, don't strike out. Put the ball in play."

Even with all the factors turning out right, Black said it was "a pretty standard procedure in that situation, game-winning run. Worse-case scenario is out at home, then you still have first and third with two outs. The proper grounder was hit, where it was not smoked, Cam had a good secondary lead, reacted to the swing in the hitting area as instructed, and beat the play."

Maybin started the winning rally with a chopper to second off Perez (0-1). He initially was called out, but Black challenged and the call was changed to safe, giving Maybin an infield single and making Black 2 for 2 in challenges Sunday and 4 for 4 this season. Rene Rivera, who earlier hit a two-run double, doubled over right fielder Gerardo Parra to move Maybin to third.

"I wasn't a big fan at first," Maybin said of the new replay system. "But it worked out."

Said Black: "Those are close plays. In 2014, that's the beauty of replay, the technology."

The Padres scored their most runs in five games.

"It was huge, man," Maybin said. "You never want to get swept in a series. We've been playing some really tough, close games. We continue to compete, continue to play hard. It's good after making so many errors. We were very fortunate to get the win today."

San Diego committed three errors.

Huston Street (1-0) pitched the ninth for the win.

Arizona entered the series with the worst record in the majors at 9-22 and the worst ERA in the majors at 5.20.

After being held to five runs in their previous four games, the Padres scored first for the first time in five games. Chris Denorfia's two-out single in the third brought in rookie Jace Peterson, who was hit on the hand with a pitch.

That snapped a streak of 20 scoreless innings by Diamondbacks pitchers.

Arizona went ahead 3-1 in the fourth. Goldschmidt hit a leadoff homer off Tyson Ross into the sandy play area beyond the fence in right-centre, his fifth. With two outs, shortstop Everth Cabrera misplayed a grounder by Cody Ross for an error. Rookie Ender Inciarte singled to left and Tuffy Gosewich brought them both in with a single to centre.

San Diego tied it in their half of the inning when Rivera hit a two-out, two-run double into the left-field corner off lefty Wade Miley.

"They gave me three runs, then I give them right back," Miley said. "We scored runs, then I give them more. That's huge. To get two outs, and then I let them back in."

Ross allowed three runs, one earned, on seven hits in seven innings, struck out five and walked one. Miley gave up three runs and six hits in seven innings, struck out four and walked one.

Black challenged a ruling that Chris Owings was safe on a grounder with two outs in the eighth. After review, Owings was called out.

NOTES: Padres 3B Chase Headley will start a rehab assignment at Class A Lake Elsinore on Monday. He's on the disabled list with a strained right calf. ... The Padres continue a 10-game homestand with a three-game series against Kansas City starting Monday night. The scheduled starters are Royals RHP Yordano Ventura (2-1, 1.50 ERA) against Padres lefty Eric Stults (1-3, 5.34). ... The Diamondbacks continue their road trip by opening a three-game set at Milwaukee. Mike Bolsinger (1-1, 5.79) is scheduled to start for the Diamondbacks against Matt Garza (1-3, 5.00).

Cameron Maybin  (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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